When your doorbell rings to sell something, think twice before bothering yourself. That child could be the next Mexican to be celebrated in the world\’s largest economy for his ability as an entrepreneur. It could even appear on television as a banner in the Hispanic heritage month embraced by the community. That child could be a close friend of the founder of Reebok, help the Shaq with funds to help other children in need, and could even have Air Jordans signed by the president of Microsoft .
That annoying little person knocking on your door has so much more to give. The problem is that it needs fertile soil. Perhaps, by becoming aware of its existence and seeing it in the eyes, you realize that you require exactly the same thing.
José Ochoa sold fruits house to house in Chihuahua when he was a child, to pay for his studies he traveled to Ciudad Juárez to work in construction. Today he is an industrial engineer in manufacturing and owner of Global Containers and Custom Packaging Inc. , the most successful logistics company in El Paso, Texas.
José, do you think that entrepreneurship is a viable option given the economic problems that the world is going through?
To be honest, for many people, entrepreneurship stopped being an option and became a necessity worldwide. This is due to many factors that were maximized by the pandemic, such as the lack of well-paid employment options; the lacerating underemployment where we see professionals working in casual jobs; the closure of thousands of businesses that left people without the comfort of a job and a secure check. This is something that already existed, but the pandemic exposed them.
Now, this situation will detonate other problems in the medium term since many people who decided to undertake were not prepared for it … they do not have the mentality or the necessary tolerance, which will generate a high percentage of failures: loss of savings, frustrations, Grudges against the economy, governments and the population, therefore will generate an even stronger deterioration in the social fabric since these people come from being unemployed to betting on entrepreneurship and then to fail.
What options does this leave you? Let\’s think not only about those people\’s goals, but what those people need to know.
From your point of view, what is riskier to have a job or to undertake?
The riskiest thing without a doubt is not knowing what you want to be and do, that is, if you are a person who has a permanent job as an employee, but you know that you have the capabilities and potential to undertake, but out of fear and comfort You perpetually choose to be a frustrated employee, that is extremely risky.
Similarly, if you irresponsibly choose to undertake because it seems \cool\ or because you think you are going to become a millionaire and work much less, you will undoubtedly be doomed to failure.
As a Mexican, do you think that starting a business in the US is better than in Mexico?
In my personal experience, the difference between starting in Mexico vs the US is abysmal.
The United States is completely friendly and fast to start, in a matter of weeks you can have your business ready to operate and invoice. In Mexico this process of undertaking is painful, bureaucratic and frustrating for both government institutions and banking institutions.
Can I, a common guy, undertake there?
Of course! The US has abundant resources and tools to start and grow your business, it is undoubtedly a country with an entrepreneurial mindset. You just need to see the number of small businesses that exist registered in the US vs Mexico, it is abysmal!
32 million small businesses in the US versus 4.9 million in Mexico. What does that data tell you? That\’s not counting the differences in what is considered a small business.
Let it be clear that with this, I am not saying that everything is given to you and that you are guaranteed success, the road is going to be very hard, difficult and complex, but at least you know that you are in a fertile ecosystem.
Is it a culture issue?
Honestly yes. I consider the United States as extremely fertile land for those who have the conviction to undertake properly, it is a country that gives you the agility, speed, confidence to exploit your capabilities and if you are dedicated and committed to your business, you will undoubtedly have a high percentage to achieve success.
Unfortunately in Mexico we have in many cases the culture of blocking each other, of judging each other, of envying success, of looking for the easy things, we get frustrated if success is not in the short term, we fight to build, to sow, to invest so much in business as in ourselves. We are full of talented and visionary people but many times they are eaten up by the ecosystem, the lack of opportunity, the lack of fertile land, the environment that surrounds them, and the lack of guidance and inspiration.
And what is the key then?
We need to understand that the key is in continuing education and preparation; which is scarce if we focus only on formal education. We have the misconception that education ends when you finish your professional or technical career and we just go to work after that, which is a deadly mistake!
When you finish your studies, you must double or triple your efforts and budgets to stay educated, learning new tools, new markets, interacting with businessmen and entrepreneurs of higher level and of different coordinates, this is what makes the difference in the long term, and will give you the sophistication necessary to understand your market, to better face problems, to make better decisions, to implement more sophisticated strategies and tactics.
If you are a person who only lives in his routine of going from home to his business and vice versa, friend believe me that you will be greatly reducing your chances of surviving in the business world.
I kept thinking about the issue that in Mexico we block each other …
Look … as an employee, entrepreneur or businessman one of your goals should be to become a leader that other people want to approach, collaborate, share time and help , that creates a very powerful synergy that over time should be key to change the narrative.
For this synergy or dynamic to take place, please be aware that you must be prepared and willing not only to drink and seek your own benefit, do not be a \taker\ you must be a \giver \, nobody likes to feel used or knowing that they are only taking advantage of it, if you want this dynamic to advance and last, be reciprocal, contribute to the equation, be also a good student and a proactive element in the ecosystem.
This is not a criticism of my country, it is simply my experience of having grown up and lived in Mexico for more than 30 years, having studied in public schools and looking for opportunities.
Can Mexico change?
We can change it, just look at the Mexican entrepreneurial community in the US and how it causes admiration even from other communities. My contribution and my actions to change this narrative in Mexico, is to the extent of my possibilities and capabilities, to help the talent and entrepreneurs of Mexico through guidance, mentoring, advice and sharing my bad and good experiences in order to that they gradually achieve a higher percentage of success in their endeavor and that they become relevant to the economy.
Why is the entrepreneurial community important for the country?
Because it is important? Because successful ventures create quality of life, economic spillover, jobs, owners and fulfilled employees; they move the economy of a community, a city, a state and a country.
It is not the big corporations such as the famous Apple, Microsoft, Coca Cola, which move the economy of the countries, it is the small businesses that do it.
What is a fact is that wherever you go you should do things right and never look for shortcuts, it is the best way to achieve sustained success in the long term.
How to do things right?
Let\’s change the paradigm of the entrepreneur in which he mistakenly focuses on pursuing his goals, instead of focusing on becoming the person who can achieve those goals.
Identifying the things you need to learn is more helpful than being brilliant.